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09-21-2016, 12:06 AM   #1
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3rd attempt at landscape photography.
Lens: Pentax 18~55mm Camera: Pentax K100D Super Photo Location: Cooper Mountain Winery ISO: 200 Shutter Speed: 1/250s Aperture: F9.5 



This one was taken the same day as the others. I tried different angles, and thought about taking out the barrel, but, it is a winery. I know now about harsh sunlight so I am taking in all of the excellent suggestions and advice from some very generous folks here. Again, many thanks.

Antonio

09-21-2016, 02:52 AM   #2
Tas
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Hi Antonio,

Your exposure looks good which is important when you're shooting in harrsher light. If I can make some suggestions that might help?

This is a good third attempt and I'd like to talk about landscapes as being as much about what you leave out as what you put in. So the barrel is good but it's placement and some features around the barrel distract from its importance to the image.

It seems from your text that you wanted to make the image about the winery. You've done this with the subjects captured; the vineyards, the barrel, the sunny climate and the countryside setting. What might help communicate that message is to juggle some of the features by adjusting your position when shooting.

I like landscapes shot with a wideangle and a telephoto. Whatever your focal length, the image must tell a story and to do this you should aim to place emphasis on some foreground features in a setting. Getting close to a good foreground subject and situating it in the right setting provides context to create the story for the image. I see your image is shot at 55mm on an APSC sensor so it's a short telephoto focal length which compresses the foreground and background together. This can be good for the right subject but not every subject. As the lens you used goes out to 18mm I'd like to talk about this image in relation to what you can do with that lens.

In the case of this image if you went wider with the lens and got closer to the barrel (placing it on the bottom left thirds position), the background as you've caught it here would also be captured but the barrel would have more emphasis on it. So with this image, it would keep all the primary elements, allow you to remove the wooden post and vine to the left of the barrel and the grass sticking up in the right front of the image. Start at 18mm and as close to the barrel as you can so you capture the whole barrel but with the vineyards in the background. Try standing, kneeling, laying if you want but you will find getting close to a good foreground subject works marvels for landscapes.

Once you go wide and get closer to the barrel you can work angles around it to identify the best direction to create a great background behind it. If for each landscape you look to go wide and get close to a good foreground subject you will see many more options for landscapes open up in front of you. Well, that's how it was for me.

That's my two cents worth mate, I hope this feedback can be of use.

Tas
09-21-2016, 06:10 AM   #3
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Hi again

Like Tas, I endorse the notion a lot of landscape comes down to composition. If you have an opportunity to revisit the site or in a similar position, walk around the scene looking at it from different angles. Here I think the barrel is the foreground object of interest. Look for ways to emphasis it. As Tas suggests place it a 1/3 position of the frame. The vines are the middle ground and the hills and sky are the background. Good that you have little sky visible, perhaps crop some more out. If you are into editing consider some fairly drastic crops as an experiment to see how different views work.

One thing to avoid is to have things poking into the frame or going out of frame. The weed bottom left for example and the vine top right, even the tree sticking out above the horizon can be a distraction. Just little details that are hard to spot in the field.

I have found this video to be of great help https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8HZCdieSAo

Keep em coming,
09-21-2016, 08:09 AM - 1 Like   #4
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good attempt and keep on practicing. the comments from Tas and Bruce are spot on, IMO.
That is a tough scene to compose as you wanted to show the distant ridge, the vines, and something in the foreground. Sometimes just walking all around the scene can reveal the perfect shot. I remember being in the same situation and instead, I ended up shooting a spider web, lol. IOW, be prepared to sieze any opportunity, even if it was not your original intent.

here's my vineyard shot, btw:

Web Design

09-21-2016, 08:13 AM   #5
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You could also work with this image in PP, using some cropping; to see if you like the results.
09-21-2016, 07:51 PM   #6
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Adjusted third landscape attempt.



Same EXIF data as the first, third attempt. I got rid of the post, the underbrush near and around the barrel and is evident, I did some cropping thereby losing the branch that was protruding into the photograph. Please let me know what else I can do to improve. Greatly appreciated.

Antonio
09-22-2016, 01:41 AM   #7
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Tony

Already a better composition. Cloning out branches can be a difficult task and best avoided in the first place.

Other "tricks" in editing are:

  • Add a very slight vignette to your landscapes. Very slight, so slight as to be almost unnoticeable. It helps draw the viewers attention in.
  • Some selective dodging and burning to certain areas of the photo. Again a very light touch is required. In this image a slight brighten up of the tops of the vines and a slight darkening of the lower parts of the vines. Where the road has a darker centre streak, darken this just a little more to increase the contrast in this area.What this does is to appear to give more depth to the image. A little on the darker patches on the hills as well.
  • Selective sharpening especially the foreground elements. The background hills remain soft due to their distance.
  • Increase contrast in the hills in the background. Just adds a bit of colour.

How you achieve these things depends on your software. But in all instances a very light touch is needed

I have attached my quick attempt to demonstrate what I mean. Probably a little heavy handed but I hope it gives you some inspiration to explore the possibilities.

Cheers
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PENTAX K100D Super  Photo 
09-22-2016, 02:26 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bruce Clark Quote
Tony

Already a better composition. Cloning out branches can be a difficult task and best avoided in the first place.

Other "tricks" in editing are:

  • Add a very slight vignette to your landscapes. Very slight, so slight as to be almost unnoticeable. It helps draw the viewers attention in.
  • Some selective dodging and burning to certain areas of the photo. Again a very light touch is required. In this image a slight brighten up of the tops of the vines and a slight darkening of the lower parts of the vines. Where the road has a darker centre streak, darken this just a little more to increase the contrast in this area.What this does is to appear to give more depth to the image. A little on the darker patches on the hills as well.
  • Selective sharpening especially the foreground elements. The background hills remain soft due to their distance.
  • Increase contrast in the hills in the background. Just adds a bit of colour.

How you achieve these things depends on your software. But in all instances a very light touch is needed

I have attached my quick attempt to demonstrate what I mean. Probably a little heavy handed but I hope it gives you some inspiration to explore the possibilities.

Cheers
My goodness, thank you very much. One question: What do you mean by: Dodging and burning? Please.

Greatly appreciated.

Tony

09-22-2016, 05:49 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tonytee Quote
My goodness, thank you very much. One question: What do you mean by: Dodging and burning? Please.

Greatly appreciated.

Tony
From Wikipedia Dodging and burning - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Dodging and burning are terms used in photography for a technique used during the printing process to manipulate the exposure of a selected area(s) on a photographic print, deviating from the rest of the image's exposure. In a darkroom print from a film negative, dodging decreases the exposure for areas of the print that the photographer wishes to be lighter, while burning increases the exposure to areas of the print that should be darker.[1]


Any material with varying degrees of opacity may be used, as preferred, to cover and/or obscure the desired area for burning or dodging. One may use a transparency with text, designs, patterns, a stencil, or a completely opaque material shaped according to the desired area of burning/dodging.
Many modern digital image editing programs have "dodge" and "burn" tools that mimic the effect on digital images.

In the traditional darkroom this was achieved by the use of masks or even the hands to shade certain portions of the image more than others. Most good editing software will have this function or similar often in the form of a brush tool. What software do you use?
09-23-2016, 07:26 AM   #10
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Hi
The old story, you are there on location and it all looks interesting, you take the shot and when you come home and put it up on screen you are disappointed. Why ? because it is very hard to capture the mood of the location, the smells, the sounds of birds, wind, colours, in short everything that prompted you to photograph what you are seeing and experiencing in the first place. I have experienced this many times and now I don't even attempt to take these sort of shots anymore because I know I will be disappointed. I have learned to identify this and move on.

Still you have this image in the can, lets see if we can rescue something.

Firstly, there is now great point of interest (the barrel doesn't count in my view but it helps to a degree). Secondly the picture is not framed too well and thirdly it was taken under very harsh light and you have not done anything to mitigate this problem in PP.

In my attempt to rescue the image I have reduced the contrast and deep shadows out of the leaves so that the picture does not look so harsh. You must not forget that the human eye is capable to make huge adjustments, so while, when on location, the harshness was probably there your eyes made adjustments on the fly to compensate and therefore "tricked" you to take the photo. That is just my guess of course.

I also cropped the picture somewhat to concentrate the view a bit. But this is probably all I can think of.

Hope I have not upset you.

Cheers

Last edited by Schraubstock; 11-15-2016 at 03:11 AM.
09-23-2016, 01:13 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Schraubstock Quote
Hi
The old story, you are there on location and it all looks interesting, you take the shot and when you come home and put it up on screen you are disappointed. Why ? because it is very hard to capture the mood of the location, the smells, the sounds of birds, wind, colours, in short everything that prompted you to photograph what you are seeing and experiencing in the first place. I have experienced this many times and now I don't even attempt to take these sort of shots anymore because I know I will be disappointed. I have learned to identify this and move on.

Still you have this image in the can, lets see if we can rescue something.

Firstly, there is now great point of interest (the barrel doesn't count in my view but it helps to a degree). Secondly the picture is not framed too well and thirdly it was taken under very harsh light and you have not done anything to mitigate this problem in PP.

In my attempt to rescue the image I have reduced the contrast and deep shadows out of the leaves so that the picture does not look so harsh. You must not forget that the human eye is capable to make huge adjustments, so while, when on location, the harshness was probably there your eyes made adjustments on the fly to compensate and therefore "tricked" you to take the photo. That is just my guess of course.

I also cropped the picture somewhat to concentrate the view a bit. But this is probably all I can think of.

Hope I have not upset you.

Cheers
First of all, many thanks for taking the time to help me out. I totally agree with everything you offered. No, I am not in any way upset, as I was fully prepared to be receptive of all comments/suggestions/solutions. I would like to work with this new venture of mine for a few more weeks and see how it goes. I say a few more weeks because that is when our Monsoon Season begins, and we have to play shut-ins for six or seven or eight months. Again, your assistance is greatly appreciated as is everyone's efforts are.

Rgds,

Antonio
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